Essays Politics International Video Interviews

Europe: A Deficit of Democracy?

An Interview with Justine Lacroix

by Thomas Vendryes , 19 May 2009
translated by Kate McNaughton

Translated with the support of The Florence Gould Foundation

According to Justine Lacroix, European institutions will never be able to provide a political forum for the kind of complex and lively democratic debate that takes place within European nation-states. However, the extension and universalisation of identical rights for all European citizens is what constitutes the European Union’s main contribution to democracy, and could, if Europe manages to resist the temptation of closing in on itself, provide a model or example for the rest of the world.

Justine Lacroix teaches political science at the Université libre de Bruxelles. She specialises in European issues, and took part, within the framework of the “Reinventing Democracy” forum organised by the République des Idées in Grenoble, in the round table entitled “Are European institutions democratic?”
This interview took place within the framework of the “Reinventing Democracy” forum in Grenoble on 8, 9 and 10 May 2009.

Video 1: You say that public indifference to European issues doesn’t call into question the democratic nature of European institutions...
Video 2 : Does building Europe promote freedom and democratic principles?
Video 3: How can we make Europe more democratic?
Video 4: Will economic cooperation allow for a universal extension of rights?

To quote this article :

Thomas Vendryes, « Europe: A Deficit of Democracy?. An Interview with Justine Lacroix », Books and Ideas , 19 May 2009. ISSN : 2105-3030. URL :

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by Thomas Vendryes , 19 May 2009

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